42 CFR § 37.3 - Chest radiographs required for miners.

§ 37.3 Chest radiographs required for miners.

(a) Voluntary examinations. Every operator must provide to each miner who is employed in or at any of its coal mines and who was employed in coal mining prior to December 30, 1969, or who has completed the required examinations under paragraph (b) of this section an opportunity for a chest radiograph at no cost to the miner in accordance with this subpart:

(1) NIOSH will notify the operator of each coal mine of a period within which the operator may provide examinations to each miner employed at its coal mine. The period must begin no sooner than 3.5 years and end no later than 4.5 years subsequent to the ending date of the previous 6-month period specified for a coal mine either by the operator on an approved plan or by NIOSH if the operator did not submit an approved plan. Within the period specified for each mine, the operator may select a 6-month period within which to provide examinations in accordance with a plan approved under § 37.101.

(2) Within either the next or future period(s) specified to the operator for each of its coal mines, the operator of the coal mine may select a different 6-month period for each of its mines within which to offer examinations. In the event the operator does not submit an approved plan, NIOSH will specify a 6-month period to the operator within which miners must have the opportunity for examinations.

(b) Mandatory examinations. Every operator must provide to each miner who begins working in or at an underground coal mine for the first time after December 30, 1969 or in or at a surface coal mine for the first time after August 1, 2014:

(1) An initial chest radiograph, as soon as possible, but in no event later than 30 days after commencement of employment or within 30 days of approval of a plan to provide chest radiographs. An initial chest radiograph given to a miner according to former regulations for this subpart prior to August 1, 2014 will also be considered as fulfilling this requirement.

(2) A second chest radiograph, in accordance with this subpart, 3 years following the initial examination if the miner is still engaged in coal mining. A second radiograph given to a miner according to former regulations under this subpart prior to August 1, 2014 will be considered as fulfilling this requirement.

(3) A third chest radiograph 2 years following the second chest radiograph if the miner is still engaged in coal mining and if the second radiograph shows evidence of category 1 (1/0, 1/1, 1/2), category 2 (2/1, 2/2, 2/3), category 3 (3/2, 3/3, 3/+) simple pneumoconiosis, or complicated pneumoconiosis (ILO Classification) or if the second spirometry examination specified in § 37.92(b)(2) shows evidence of decreased lung function to the extent specified in § 37.92(b)(3).

(c) Notification. NIOSH will notify the miner when he or she is due to receive the second or third mandatory examination under paragraph (b) of this section. NIOSH will notify the coal mine operator when the miner is to be given a second examination.

(1) The operator will be notified of a miner's third examination only with the miner's written consent. The notice to the operator will not state the medical reason for the examination or that it is the third examination in the series.

(2) If the miner is notified by NIOSH that the third mandatory examination is due and the operator is not so notified, availability of the radiographic examination under the NIOSH-approved operator's plan will constitute the operator's compliance with the requirement to provide a third mandatory examination even if the miner refuses to take the examination.

(d) Availability of chest radiographs. The opportunity for chest radiographs to be made available by an operator for purposes of this subpart must be provided in accordance with a plan that has been submitted and approved in accordance with this part.

[81 FR 73280, Oct. 24, 2016]

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